The Age Of White Guilt By Shelby Steele

1936 words - 8 pages

The Real Fault
INTRODUCTION:
“On his show Monday night, Sean Hannity spoke with Ann Coulter about the racism and the narrative she said the media is pushing in order to avoid discussing difficult issues. Everyone would be better off without “white guilt,” Coulter argued — decrying that all liberals want to talk about is racism.Rattling off a list of foreign policy concerns, Hannity noted that Democrats aren’t talking about any of those issues, “because all they can do is accuse Republicans of racism.” We’ve gotten to a point where everything is deemed racist, he and Coulter agreed. At that point, he aired a montage of “Democrats playing the issue hard.” These “tactics,” Hannity said — citing “class warfare,” “scaring granny” and the “race card” — are proving effective to a certain extent” (Vamburker). In Age of White Guilt, Shelby Steele writes to both whites and blacks to express concern and shed light on the injustices he feels African-Americans are placing on whites. Steele’s purpose of his essay is to address White Guilt, which he defines as “...not a personal sense of remorse over past wrongs. White guilt is literally a vacuum of moral authority in matters of race, equality, and opportunity that comes from the association of mere white skin with America’s historical racism”(Steele 39). Steele goes in depth about the deindividuation of blacks and the conformity that he feels is happening throughout the black community as a result. Throughout the essay, Steele appeals to ethos by not only providing facts to support his claim, he also uses his first hand account, detached from the emotion, to build his credibility. Many of Steele’s points are valid and give the audience food for thought, but at the same time most of his arguments only fit extremists.
RHETORICAL ANALYSIS:
The rhetorical analysis used in The Age of White Guilt allows Steele to push his purpose on the reader more effectively with the use of parallelism to attract the readers attention to the main part of his essay. “The greatest problem in coming from an oppressed group is the power the oppressor has over your group. The second greatest problem is the power your group has over you”(Steele 36). By using parallelism Steele is able to take a hold of the readers attention and really make them think about what he just said. By building his credibility in the early stages of his essay, Steele is able to appeal to ethos. By doing so, he proves to his audience that he truly knows and understands the topic of white guilt, and that he has placed himself in the shoes of others. By opening his essay with an anecdote, Steele is personally relating his personal life with the subject of his essay which causes his credibility to increase in the eyes of the reader and it also appeals to pathos. “Did he again need… to be out from under the impossible demands of a symbiotically defined black identity, to breathe on his own?” (Steele 40). By using this rhetorical question, Steele is able to engage...

Find Another Essay On The Age of White Guilt by Shelby Steele

Eliezer Internal Conflicts caused by the Guilt of Surviving

1446 words - 6 pages Eliezer and cause him to feel that life is not worth living. He mentions continually throughout the novel that he wishes he were dead. These feelings are caused by the guilt that he carries for surviving when compared to the fate of others. Throughout his time in the hospital, Eliezer struggles with an internal conflict between surviving and dying, which suppresses his personal growth; he simply cannot erase his past memories, which cause him to

THE GUILT OF UNCERTAINTY Essay

1267 words - 5 pages heretofore been sleeping with. At this point, it seems as if Josef is finally ready to face the reality of his trial and get it over with. He soon lapses into a depressive obsession, however, after determining to draw up a petition of everything he's ever done to prove that he must be innocent. In this part of the story, Josef begins on the right path by trying to face his guilt himself, and he even sets about starting to interrogate himself

The Day the Voices Stopped: Autobiography of Ken Steele

2307 words - 10 pages Christiana Flaherty PSC 168, Professor Schepeler 05/28/14 The Day the Voices Stopped The Day the Voices Stopped is the autobiography of Ken Steele, a man who suffered from schizophrenia for the majority of his life, only finding peace and solace after finding the right anti-psychotic medication. Steele began hearing voices at the age of fourteen through the radio, before eventually leaving his parents’ house ,without their support, at the

Macbeth: The Effects of Guilt

1218 words - 5 pages do what she thinks is best. Though Lady Macbeth may have initially seemed unaffected by the murders she had been involved in, her desires eventually faded and were replaced with an invincible feeling of guilt which eventually took her life. An overpowering emotion, guilt once lay dormant in Lady Macbeth, but this dormancy foreshadows the effects it would have on her later in the play. At one point, Macbeth states, “…We but teach

The Guilt of Lizzie Borden

814 words - 4 pages Lizzie Borden is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of slaughtering her father and stepmother in cold blood. She had very compelling motives for doing this. One of her motives was that she had a lot to gain, including upwards of $10 million in today’s money (“9 things you may not know about Lizzie Borden” p. 1), which would be like winning the lottery if she got the money by legitimate means. This would be very good for her because, even though

The Kite Runner: Blinded by Guilt

1030 words - 5 pages The Kite Runner: Blinded by Guilt A person’s childhood is the foundation that paves the way for the rest of one’s life. Memorable events can trigger certain emotions in a child and, as a result, change the nature of that person as an adult. Set in the 1970s in California, the novel The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini is told in flashbacks as the reader follows the main character through his resolutions to lifelong conflicts. The novel traces

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

938 words - 4 pages The Age of Innocence Social classes have been imbedded into society ever since the establishment of a hierarchy. In The Age of Innocence written by Edith Wharton, Archer is a prime example of emptiness due to the injustice of the social class. Humanity becomes shallow when one focuses on material possessions to determine value or popularity. In The Age of Innocence, the author explores the life of high society in the early Victorian-Era New

The Age of Innocence, by Edith Wharton

2466 words - 10 pages born on January 24, 1862 into a wealthy family that was high ranked in society, and after World War 1 she used her book to replicate a similar time in her childhood. “In a sense she tried to escape the vexations of the post-war years by commemorating a culture that she had known as a child” (McDowell 59.) Edith herself reported, “I found a momentary escape in going back to my childish memories of a long vanished America and wrote The Age of

The Age of Innocence, by Edith Wharton

908 words - 4 pages end he has to choose one of the two, Newland sacrifices his happiness to maintain everyone's reputation. Just because of the way that he was raised, “with proper family values” Newland ends up marrying a woman his family accepts, May. As well one of the themes that Wharton presents in “The Age of Innocence” is hypocrisy within the society. The author presents the New York society during the 1870s that ignores reality and pretends to act

The Importance of the Cell Phone Age: From Stone Age to Phone Age by Barbara Ehrenreich

865 words - 3 pages In “From Stone Age to Phone Age”, Barbara Ehrenreich describes that cell phones are not well suited to her even though they are fashionable. In her article, she points out cell phones are not used to connect people to each other but to isolate them from a big group of people. I think cell phones are very important to our daily life because they are convenient to manage our lives. Moreover, from the earlier cell phone age to nowadays, cell phones

Critical Essay of The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne ( Do you dread guilt?)

700 words - 3 pages What is guilt? We all have guilt about something. Maybe forgetting something,lied about something, or even did something that shouldn't of been done. In The ScarletLetter by Nathaniel Hawthorne we saw guilt fester in the minds and outward appearanceof the main characters, Hester Prynne, Arthur Dimmesdale and Roger Chillingworth.When you hear the word guilt what do you think it means? Guilt meansremorseful awareness of having done something wrong

Similar Essays

The Age Of White Guilt By Shelby Steel

1051 words - 4 pages     “Since the social victim has been oppressed by society, he comes to feel that his individual life will be improved more by changes in society than by his own initiative.” These words belong to conversative author and social critic Shelby Steele. Steele is often criticized by the Black community for his right-wing views on ideas such affirmative action and multiculturalism. In Steele’s short essay, The Age Of White Guilt, Steele discusses

Is Racism In The Heart? By Tommie Shelby

1547 words - 6 pages evaluated. Shelby gives the hypothetical case of Stephen (white) disliking Andre (black) because Andre was having an affair with Stephen’s wife. In this example, Shelby illustrates that Stephen’s derives his dislike of Andre from Andre’s behavior not his race (480). Thus, Shelby raises the question of what racism actually signifies. Rather than disliking someone simply on the basis of skin color, Shelby suggests that is has a “deeper meaning” (480

The Effect Of Guilt Essay

703 words - 3 pages strong-willed woman by the end of the novel. In the case of Hester, a colonist, guilt transforms her into an angel to society. However, in the beginning, she commits the crime of adultery: Hester has her daughter, Pearl, without a husband. Sin alert! Not on the Puritans’ watch! Hester is then forced to wear a scarlet letter A to show her guilt, and all of the colonists know about her guilty act. Even though Hester is ostracized by the community

Redemption Of Guilt In The Kite Runner By Khaled Hosseini

706 words - 3 pages Redemption of Guilt Guilt is a result of sin, and sin is a result of misaction. In the novel, The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini, the protagonist, Amir, goes on a journey to redeem himself for his sins. When Amir was 12, he witnessed his best friend, Hassan, get raped in an alley. Instead of standing up for his friend, Amir ran away in selfishness and cowardice. The guilt of his choice plagues Amir for the rest of his life, until one day, he